I am a man who may be stuck in the past. I like wearing double breasted or three piece suits, I think a bar should smell like cigarette smoke, I hold doors open for women and love a good cigar. It is the last part which I want to discuss, mostly because if your mother didn’t teach you the basic rules of chivalry and how to dress, I don’t have the time or energy to force you to get your shit together.
What I do have the time and energy for, however, is helping you make a relaxing cigar bar in your home.
The first is deciding on what type of cigar smoker you are. If you are a once a day cigar smoker, you will probably want to put more emphasis on larger humidors (Cigars International) and possibly more emphasis on entertainment for while you smoke. If you are a social smoker who simply likes a Romeo Y Julieta with company, you want a few chairs and possibly a few ash trays. If you are simply an occasional, once every week or two smoker, you can simply get a desktop humidor, a single chair and an side table with a high end ashtray.
The next is choosing your space. If you don’t have a ton of space available, setting up a couple of chairs in your home office is usually the best choice if you have limited space (Like myself). The added benefit is the decor in a high end cigar bar and a classic style office can be similar. You will also want to consider the smell. If you have a family, you may have an issue smoking on the main floor, and my have to relegate your cigar bar to a far off corner of a house like a back bedroom slightly away from the master/ children’s room, the basement or if you get desperate, the garage. You will also want some degree of ventilation. This does not have to be much more than a window, but splurging the $20 to have a window fan on exhaust isn’t a bad call.
Color is a big key in cigar bars. While you may be a modernist at heart, you want to avoid whites in a room that will be repeatedly filled with smoke. Think about using rich colors like reds and browns. The darker colors will be more resistant to accumulate noticeable amounts of carbon smoke. If your prefer milder smokes, like the ones with Connecticut wrappers, lighter colors may be something you want to do. Just remember the light tans and dark yellows will build up carbon stains. If this is a risk you are willing to accept, go for it. I prefer to look at darker, more traditional colors whenever possible. Look at Valspar’s National Trust Historic Colors for possible ideas.
When deciding on furniture, there are no commandments but there are guidelines. Most cigars bars used richer colored woods (or at least stained darker) for the furniture like desks and tables. Look at cherry, red oak, rosewood, mahogany, or even espresso. I would avoid pine, oak, or bamboo with anything other than the occasional accent piece. When it comes to chairs, fabric will absorb the smell off the cigars much quicker than its leather and microfiber counterparts. If you do not have the cash for a leather wing back chair, you can always do something as simple as a wooden rocking chair. This can be an even cheaper alternative if you check out tag sales, antique stores and classified ads. You may have to put some elbow grease into it to make it perfect, but the antique feel you can create may be worth it.
Finding the accessories is where the real fun can come in. You get to pick out your humidor, ashtrays and of course your barware. (Whats a good cigar without a good scotch, whiskey, brandy or a cognac?) I like to keep a theme throughout if possible. I have a crystal ashtray, liquor carafes, and glassware for mine, but it is your home. You can find ashtrays in everything from stainless steel, aluminum, glass, wood, plastic and just about everything else you can think of. I even have two that are made of black and brown marbled granite.
The last thing to consider is “entertainment”. Personally I personally like being alone with my thoughts when I smoke, but having a flat screen to watch a game or a few magazines aren’t horrible ideas. If you merely reserve the room for when you and your buddies sit back and enjoy their respective stogies, no entertainment is needed. You simply put the chairs in a circle and spend the time insulting each other. If you are like me, and smoke alone, all you really need is a comfortable chair and an adult beverage to tune out the world for 45 minutes.
Above all, it is your house, and all of the things I have laid out are merely suggestions and it is your house.
Links to look at: